The Robin Williams Media

Comedian Robin Williams performs at the USO holiday tour show at Camp Victory, Iraq, Dec 13, 2010.  Photo:United States Army(public domain)
Photo:United States Army(public domain)

When news broke of Robin Williams death, the news media all shifted into high gear to report on his life and death. In the San Francisco Bay Area, it dominated the news on all the broadcast stations. The media quickly told us all about his life and his death. Celebrities weighed on through the new media–Twitter and Facebook–about how saddened they were at his passing. Then we learned he committed suicide and soon details were revealed. It did not matter that the family wanted time to grieve. Nope, they went right out to report on details that were unsettling to say the least. And then the second wave stormed the beaches. We learned of his depression, drugs, and possibly financial problems. Then the third wave came ashore. These are the experts who talked about suicide and depression. People who knew Williams also filled in some blanks in this regard.

Robin Williams was perhaps one of the greatest comedians in recent history. Those of us old enough to remember recall him on Happy Days and latter Mork and Mindy. His improvisational routines were phenomenal and he was a good actor to boot in many movies, both comedies and serious roles. Unlike many in the entertainment field, he did not live in New York or Los Angeles but in Tiburon, California. He choose to live away from that world to be closer to his family. Which makes it all that more sad that he chose suicide. His family is no doubt beside themselves trying to figure the reason why. And of course the chatter boxes in the media are doing so as well.

The entertainment media, the same ones who breathlessly report on everything Kim Kardashian does or wears, are doing a high wire act. On one hand, they want to report the real details about Robin Williams but at the same time subtly criticize what he did. They go after anyone who says suicide is a selfish or cowards way out with glee, ripping them up the way Joan Rivers does with her jokes. But they do the same thing by reporting all kinds of negative stuff and that his death was an escape from these problems. Then they wrap it around some expert to explain how depression and suicide are linked to make it sound like they are doing a public service.

Humbug as Scrooge often says in A Christmas Carol. And they will heap more of it in the days and possibly weeks to come. For Zelda Williams, the daughter of Robin Williams, she got a taste of the nastiness that is out there when she tweeted about her fathers death. Then the trolls started posting graphic images of her father and she decided to get off Twitter and other online accounts. These no doubt are people who think themselves cool, as Greg Gutfeld points out, and yet take great glee in ripping to shreds the uncool. To themselves and like-minded friends, they see nothing amiss with posting graphic pictures of Robin Williams as a corpse. And ripping up his daughter in the process. I am sure they chuckle with glee at what they did. When the tables are turned, they are the first to decry the hatred and bullying the other guy is doing to them. And they demand something be done about them but when their own actions are called into question, turn nasty and spiteful upon anyone who is doing it.